reconciliation & eternal salvation:
Born in 1943, I grew up hearing of an awful
Hell and wanting to avoid Hell!
Since at least as far back as 1991, I have been "working out my salvation"...sort of
realizing doctrinal truths...as reflected in essays on this my personal website. I have it
on-line, visible to whomever might blunder into it (I even fancy it as a "ministry"...that
the Holy Spirit might even direct someone to the website [I say that very self-consciously
because I've had to continually revise as I learn more...often through e-mail discussions
which challenge me]).
I'd been working on The Gospel during 2004. Jesus was either
a fake, or He was who He said He was/is...the Messiah...the Savior of mankind. His
resurrection from the dead validates all that He has said. After all, His resurrected Self
was seen by over 500 witnesses (1
Corinthians 15:6) over the 40 resurrected days on earth. Ten days later Peter told the
crowds in Jerusalem about Him, and over 3000 became converts and were baptized (Acts 2:41).
His here-to-fore frightened disciples nearly instantly became fearless evangelists (almost all being eventually murdered). And no
religion of voluntary membership would have been founded or sustained for over 2000 years had
He been a fake. But, in the background of my mind, it turns out that I was also struggling
over who gets eternal salvation after death and how.
- I e-mailed back
& forth with a Church of Christ representative in the summer of 2004 for a month or more
about his restrictive interpretation of scriptural writings on baptism;
- Then a month or more
in late 2004 with our nephew in the Lutheran (CLC) Seminary in Eau Claire, Wisconsin...largely
over their exclusiveness (mix prayer, Communion, & Christian worship only with those of the
exact same Confession) and their view that there is no free will at all in spiritual
- Ah! then came a
bolt out of the blue! I had been at work for a year or more on understanding or reconciling
"election" when I got an e-mail from Kurt just after Christmas 2004...here is his testimony on my website. Having read my files
on the Gospel, he saw that I left "bad news" in the file...unbelievers go to an eternal
His first e-mail was entitled "no bad news
in the good news". With scripture and all, he reasoned that Jesus died an atoning &
substitutionary death for the forgiveness of sin AND eternal salvation of all people!! I
then had exciting thoughts about this being a means to clarify what had seemed like discordant,
possibly even contrary, statements of salvation doctrine. His emphasis was that all humans are
headed to Heaven...that all of our rules and "right ways" to follow "The Way" of Jesus have to do
with lives while on earth. A life not indwelt by the Holy Spirit...not
divinely empowered & not in possession of any true fruits of the Holy Spirit...is going to
be one with earthly consequences different from those of the true Jesus follower (who is
indwelt by the Holy Spirit & possesses consequences of this indwelling...fruits of the
Spirit). That is, God truly loves all and truly desires that all be saved. And Jesus set that
very thing up with His finished work on the cross.
Kurt further indicated that about two thirds
of the early churches prior to Constantine believed in universal eternal salvation. And,
some say that a "universal eternal salvation" doctrine prevailed until about 500AD when
Augustine began to write of a hell with eternal torment. Could the early church of Rome
and Orthodox churches have made a colossal error in formulating doctrine (doctrine =
agreed-upon understanding of the Bible) restricting eternal (after your death) salvation
to those baptized (1) with water & (2) the Holy Spirit and (3) following Jesus? Has
subsequent historical and cultural evolution produced a momentum that makes it hopelessly
difficult to discuss such a thought as a Jesus-produced "universal eternal salvation"
(universal reconciliation; Gospel of inclusion; Christian Universalism) in any mainstream
Christian church without immediate accusations of heresy and false teaching? I'm afraid
that the answer is "yes" because our thousands of Christian denominations debate
about doctrines between and within themselves almost without ceasing.
In essence: (1) The
"afterlife": All humans ever born will have eternal life with God after
death...Jesus said "It is finished" because He made it all right with God the Father by
His death. (2) The life on earth: As to a person's time on earth,
there are only two types of humans: [a] those indwelt by the Holy Spirit and [b] those
not indwelt. And this doctrine allows both to come home to the Father forever (remember
Jesus' parable of the prodigal son).
One can ONLY become
Holy-Spirit indwelt on earth by truly believing in Jesus & thereby becoming a Jesus follower. Therefore, the
indwelt have a divine internal power (the Holy Spirit) helping them in this life on earth.
And those not indwelt are in this life "on their on". Universal reconciliation doesn't
nullify the drive for the "works" of Christianity. It is worth all possible
evangelistic effort to be part of the converting of people to the state of being indwelt
that they might glorify God and have a life of empowerment & peace on earth.
Missionaries and church programs continue to be critically needed if one believes
"universal Christian reconciliation". By exploring and presenting this grace-filled and
mercy-filled doctrinal angle, I do not at all mean to commit blasphemy or
Indwelt by the Holy
On Earth: The Jesus
follower/believer/disciple/representative/Christian, Holy Spirit indwelt, gets the
following extreme, huge advantages in life on earth:
- is granted freedom
on earth from sin's power: the indwelt can resist sin.
- is instantly united
on earth with the savior, Jesus: the believer is alongside Jesus..."in Christ".
- instantly becomes (on
earth) a "part of God's family": a member of the Church Universal.
- instantly becomes an
earthly member of the Kingdom of Light. [the kingdom of darkness is ruled by Satan and includes
all humans who are not Holy Spirit indwelt].
- instantly begins on
earth the divine process of being sanctified (becoming Jesus-like).
can begin to transform into a person relating to God and to man
in right relationships!
Afterlife: That indwelt person, having the eternal indwelling of the Holy Spirit, is able to commune & resonate and be on a perfect "radio-frequency" with God eternally...the most exquisite and continual experience of love that is possible. I'm thinking that those who are NOT indwelt will be aware that they are missing salvation's afterlife eternal, supreme, eternal, ecstatic love experience.
Here [here] is an almost-one-page summary you can
print and read away from the computer. If you want to consider this all-inclusive eternal salvation
in further depth, [click
Some related (not necessarily recommended)
- John Gavazzoni's
website & writings.
- about Carlton Pearson with links to his webs. [Higher Dimensions Family
Church, Tulsa, OK]
- J. W. Hanson on Tent
- Eric Stetson's
Christian Universalism, Universal Reconciliation website.
- Ken Eckerty's
books or web quotes.
- Harold Lovelace,
preaching this view since about 1955...website.
***give me your comments about this
check out the Highest
February 2005; latest adjustment 19 July 2015)